Thursday, December 29, 2011

Out with the old

All set for the big feast !

Occupy London

I had a "Curb your enthusiasm" moment with this.
Yes we do have it, but with chicken !

Taxi sign in Dublin...He works everywhere !

Well if anyone still reads this blog I will just pass on some of the wisdom gained in the past year or so.
I am the person who observes the world as it passes along, my passengers who passed their gems of knowledge to me I give thanks.

I am amazed by what has happened in the financial world during the past 2 years, there WAS fraud, yet the guilty are being propped up by the state, more than one developer is being employed by NAMA on a wage in excess of €200,000 to sort out his mess.

Its the young people need help, families stuck in negative equity, not only here but in many other lands.

I have said it many times our leaders were feeding at the trough with the bankers and the developers, nothing will be done about this disaster because the corruption started at the very top.

Therefore nothing will be done.

So the small man will suffer, the teacher, the ill people, children with special needs and all the needy people will have to shoulder gigantic cut backs.

While our "leaders" will pat each other on the back and say
"Didn't we do well?"

There is no solution to this so don't get yourselves into a sweat thinking about it.

"No answer to the problem?" That must be a first from any taxi driver ever!

I went to a funeral on Christmas eve up in Bailieborough County Cavan where I came from.
It was the Mother of a childhood friend.
Her son lives in Sydney Australia and had to leave home with very little notice.
Without a doubt it was a mad dash, so close to Christmas with no reservations made.

It was a very nostalgic journey for me as well.
Everything has changed I knew almost no one and the town itself is a shadow of its former self.
Tesco built a huge supermarket on the edge of town and it has sucked all the retail business from the local shops.

That's progress, I wonder?

Perhaps this movie I found will educate you.

But I am an optimist and I hope that this coming year 2012 brings you wisdom and hope for the generations coming after us.

Hugs and kisses. (Except for you, ugly brute)

Sunday, December 25, 2011

Christmas day

Here it is, Christmas day.

I hope it is a great one for you all.

Remember that a dog is not just for Christmas.

Have a good one.

Monday, December 19, 2011

The last Christmas cheer

Where would we be without this mad song

I hope this comes out.

something from Ry Cooder.

So my wishes and hopes for the future is that we will take better care of each other.
I also hope that we will have the courage to speak up on behalf of the opressed.
I hope that we can do something more to help young famlys who are stuck in negative equity, that is help the banks less and people more.

I hope Santa brings you everything you wanted.

See you all in 2012.

Sunday, December 18, 2011

Lost property

To all Dublin taxi drivers

On Friday night 2nd December, my mother left her phone in a taxi which she got from South William St. to the Gresham hotel.
It’s an old Nokia-battered and not really of any value whatsoever.
Ordinarily we would just let it lie. However, on her phone are photos of my little sister who died in September and, as happens to us all my mother had not gotten around to saving them anywhere else.

I am asking all taxi drivers if they picked up a couple on South William St. on Friday night around 11 PM on 2nd December. Going to the Gresham hotel.
Please check down the back and under your seats. As we say it has no resale value, but it is so precious to my Mother.

Kate Clarke 087 2676747

Mary Leonard 087 6497587

Thursday, December 15, 2011

Best wishes

Thanks for reminding me of that Paddy I have put it up for a few years now.
So lets give it a lash and put the rest up.

Happy Christmas to one and all.

Safe driving and happy passengers to you all.

Monday, December 12, 2011

Not long to go now

Dressing up for the occasion

Big cheese in East Wall

Early worker waits to be let in.

Toys for sale

Covent Garden

I drove over towards the Westbury to get a cup of coffee at the paper shop across the road. Not a chance to park, so I looped around and picked up a customer as I went around the corner. The guy had loads of bags and as he was getting in a car behind blew his horn.
"Mind these I'm going to kill that bastard".
I calmed him down and told him that sometimes arseholes begin at the top of the head and continue to their heels.
He began to settle down.
"He will get home and find a summons for speeding or a really big credit card bill he wasn't expecting" Drawing bad things towards himself he is, that's all.

He told me that he worked the doors at a casino on Auinger St. His mate was across the road talking to a big Russian guy and it looked like the situation would boil over, so he went across and dragged his mate back across the road again.The Russian guy who was out of his mind was insulting both of them so he dragged his mate back to the casino. The Russian followed them taunting and whistling at them. "So I told him to go back home to Russia where there was plenty of idiots there like himself he could fight with"
The guy then went off.
20 minutes later a police car came over to the casino. "Did you see a Russian man with a brown leather jacket, he held up a taxi driver at knife point and robbed him"
Well he had walked over to the casino where the cameras had picked him up.
He had even looked up into the cameras.

So the Garda have him in full technicolour.

I think I will go to the casino myself and get a copy of the photo for the Kesh (taxi holding area at the airport)
He is probably wanted in Russia as well.

Heading home the other day I picked up a girl who works in one of the children's hospitals, she was working in South Africa before this and her partner wanted to come and work in Europe, so they quickly married so he could get a green card and work in Europe.
A few weeks later he took a seizure and collapsed.
He had never had a headache, no double vision,nothing.

He had a brain tumour..After the operation he is fine again.
Her mother had a brain tumour only a few months before all this happened.
Now she thanks God for every day and takes nothing for granted.
She is a wonderful calm person in spite of it all and loves Ireland and the Irish welcome.

I hope the Christmas lights she bought in Woodies work well.

Another lady I picked up in James's St going to Liffey Valley, she was just going to Atlantic homecare and back. I told her that I would pause the meter while she was in the shop and bring her back home.
She had a story that would make your hair stand on end.
A neighbour of hers is a complete headcase, she has started a feud with another family. Instead of getting together over a pot of tea the situation has escalated to the point where a bomb was placed outside the flat.
The device was spotted and the bomb squad was called.
Everyone in the complex was evacuated for a few hours.
She told me that the army said that if the device had gone off it would have completely demolished the woman's flat the one next door and the one above it.

Wow that is a feud and a half.

One other passenger told me she was working in a well known top of the range department store, sales were low and management started threatening staff, cutting hours and laying off people.
She herself was breaking up with a long term relationship.
She read a book called The Monk Who Sold his Ferrari by Robin Sharma. She saw what she should do and handed in her notice and started work in Kildare Village.
Her life has become a dream. She enjoys her work. The new boss praises his staff and talks to them, looks for suggestions. Everyone is happy.

Happy staff= happy customers=higher sales

Sunday, December 11, 2011

4 out of 5 who kill themselves are men

Girls toolbox with pretty feathers etc.

Pearly Kings

A bicycle for 6

A car tied up in cling film.

5 Dead on the roads in 24 hours yesterday.
Each one a tragedy, a mother taking her daughter and 3 friends to a dance skidded on black ice and went into a river killing the driver and her daughter.
Take care,slow down, better to be late than dead.

Christmas for me is not a good time, my skin gets thinner and I see the guys selling drugs to kids. The desperation in the family's where they have fallen into debt and Christmas just around the corner.All the lonely people on the streets, and the drinking to complete excess sickens me to the core.
I do suffer from depression,I am by polar.
Just so you know, depression is more like a bad dose of the flu rather than feeling sad, when you have it you cannot function. I take Lithium and it levels out my life. But I see so many people who have no one to love in their lives and they walk the streets of our cities in desperation seeking solace.
The true measure of any society is how they look after their young their sick and their elderly people.We do very badly on this.
I don't dwell on the doom and gloom that's going on at present, but there was a horrific case on the news the other day where a father and mother abused their children through their youth. One daughter bore two children by her father. Thank God that the Garda team had the tensity to follow the case through to its conclusion.
The father got life in prison, the mother was also locked up. I hope the children get the best of care.

For a crime like this against children a bullet between the two eyes would be the better solution, low cost, problem solved.

Ray Darcy had a slot about suicide he has put up a podcast.
Have a listen here. You are looking for the podcast of Dr.Harry Barry.

Did you follow that link on my last posting to send a message to a political prisoner?
Think about it, better than sending a card to someone you don't like.

Just as an afterthought. There was a guy who was kidnapped in our fair city and turned up dead a few days later.
Word on the street is that he was told to look after some drugs for a local gang. He hid it in the Green bin. But his mother didn't know that he had done this and she put out the bin for collection.

Short measure

Well most taxi drivers started using this petrol station again after it went from the dearest petrol to the cheapest,

From the Irish Times.

A service station on Dublin’s south quays has been fined €14,000 in the District Court today after pleading guilty to using fuel pumps which were “under-measuring” the amount of petrol and diesel being sold to consumers.

In an action taken by the National Standards Authority of Ireland’s (NSAI) Legal Metrology Service (LMS), the service station, trading as One Oil pleaded guilty to twelve charges of breaches of the Metrology Act, 1996.

The petrol station, located on Ushers Quay in Dublin, pleaded guilty to offences connected to the use of an unverified instrument and short measure on sale of motor fuel under Sections 13 and 28 of the Act, respectively.

The action was taken after the NSAI received a number of complaints from consumers about the petrol station.

In August 2010, LMS inspectors visited the station to inspect the premises and verify instrument compliance. A significant number of non-compliance issues were uncovered and reported to the garage owners, who were instructed to immediately rectify the non-compliances.

However, in response to further complaints from members of the public in February 2011, LMS inspectors revisited the premises and discovered that the previously verified and rectified fuel pumps had broken seals and were significantly under-measuring petrol and diesel being sold to consumers.

According to Maurice Buckley, the chief executive of the NSAI, its Legal Metrology Service visited almost 4,000 trader’s premises and tested more than 17,000 measuring instruments - such as supermarket weighing scales and taxi meters - where the correct charge or cost to consumers is dependent on accurate quantity measurement.

In addition, almost 8,000 fuel pumps at 1,300 service stations were also inspected last year. More than 2,000 warnings, which require corrective action such as minor adjustments or recalibration of equipment, were issued to traders.

There were also 13 prosecutions taken for non-compliance, where a trader did not take appropriate corrective action following a warning, with 10 of these resulting in conviction. Each of those prosecutions was related to non-compliant taxi meters.

Wednesday, December 07, 2011

Magic Paul

Yesterday saw the arrival of the celebrity magician Paul Daniels with the lovely Debbie Magee, she has Irish roots and she brought her cousins along to the magicians club.
He gave us a good talk about presentation and giving good customer satisfaction.
He is as quick witted as ever, a very entertaining man.

When we first met years ago he called the group to attention.
"I want to introduce John to you all. Note the way he is dressed,this is important to note, this is a sure sign of a wealthy man. He doesn't waste money buying good clothes like you lot do"
When I met him through the years I took a photograph of us both.
This time I decided not to take one as we were getting progressively older each time we took the photograph.
So to stop that ageing process I didn't take the snapshot.

"Magic is the best fun you can have without taking your clothes off" So he says

Here is a good thing you can do for Christmas.
Go to this website and write a Christmas card to a prisoner of conscience.
No this may be someone who spoke out against a corrupt politician, or policeman and now find themselves in prison.

Think about it at least.

Another thing coming up today is an art exhibition for the CFCP connecting the immigrant/experimental/emerging artists in Ireland.
You do know that when you find an emerging artist and buy their work your investment goes up fast.Plenty of Polish artists represented here.

I have an eye infection, I have been to the doctor and it is worse now.
The last time this happened a doctor in the eye and ear hospital told me that handling money is deadly.

Never wipe you eye with your hand, use a tissue, one end for each eye and discard it at once.
He told me at the time that I was only days away from loosing the eye as my resistance to infection was very low because the eye had become re infected several times.
Perhaps I will go back there tomorrow.
Talking about magic.

Did you ever hear of Ricky Jay?

Our great leaders

He looked at my ESB bill which was lying on the dashboard as he got into the taxi.
I thought I recognised him, though I couldn't’t put a name on him

“Hello Johnny, I hope you’re well”

From then on he was like a long playing record, no stopping him.
He just talked on and on.

At some point I recalled that he was one of our “Elected representatives”
When I got a break in his rant I asked him how he could put with all the abuse he gets from the members of the public when he went out canvassing for election.

Well his mouth took off as if it was in overdrive, he was in great form.

Why do I do it all you ask for the measly sum of £34,000 a year?
(£34,000 in 1981 was a lot of money more than 3 times the national average wage)

The £34,000 is not the issue for me.
You see I am also on the transport committee for which I get £16,000 a year.
The housing committee for which I get £14,000 a year.
I’m on the education committee for which I get £14, 000 a year.
Plus the lighting committee for which I get £12,000 .

I don’t even know what the lighting committee does, but they pay me anyhow.

This is in Irish Punts, the Euro has not arrived…

Real money

Now that brings my income up to £90,000 a year.
Now you might think that is a lot of money..

But it gets better.

Did you ever hear of appearance money, they call it attendance money, but I prefer to call it Appearance money because I consider myself somewhat of an artiste !

I get £116 per day for appearing in the Dail , plus travel expenses and subsistence allowance.
Plus a subsidy in the Dail bar and restaraunt.

Now you remember the committiees?
The Housing
The education,
The transport and we must not forget the lighting committee,

They sit on the same day as the DAIL.
I get appearance money for all the committies as well.

It all adds up to £51,750 and this on top of the £90,000 and you know what its all tax free!
£116 for the Dail
£116 for transport committee
£116 for the housing committee
£116 for the lighting committee
£116 for the education committee

Per day.

There may have even a few more committees as well !

Now we only sit for 90 days, so my yearly income I earn in 3 months.

But it gets even better….

Expenses !

£82 a day !
Over 90 days that’s another £7380
Now add the 4 committees £36,900

Now that tops my income up to roughly to £152,100 per year.

Nearly 10 times the national average!

Where would you be without the expenses ?

You need the expenses.

Sure I have to take taxis from the Dail to the transport committee then to the lighting committee .

Yous lads are not cheap either.

Then there’s my constituents calling to my house,

I converted the garage into a small office, the clinic its called. I put the electricity and gas meters on to the wall of the garage. So now I can claim for my heating water rates and electricity , even helping out with the old mortgage,
All legitimate expenses.
And sure if you need to extend the house you can say that it is to compensate for the space you lost by converting the garage…Of course you know who foots the bill?
Then I have to take out public liability insurance in case one of my constituents fall.

Another expense.

Who pays for that ?
The tax paying voting public that’s who pays.

Do you see the security cameras and the top notch alarm system ?
Who paid for that ?

Then there’s the phone in the house, in the office, the 3 mobile phones and the secretarial wages even though its my wife who looks after most things here in my house.

Did you ever wonder how we dress so well?


Yes its very important that the people you elect dress well and look well groomed.
Well when you get your clothing allowance you can still claim for tax on the money you spent buying the clothes. Add to that the laundry, dry cleaning.

Now if I could only get the clothing allowance for the wife!
No she doesn’t get that .
But she does get tax deductions on the dresses and shoes she buys.
Its an expense you see.

And then there’s the jewellery allowance as well..

Well she has to dress the part.

Then there’s the charity functions, there good too.

Did you see me in the paper giving the personal cheque to the Simon community the other day ?

Refundable from party funds !

Then there’s the charity auctions, you get your picture in the paper, you get your money back and you get to keep the item, Not bad at all.

So I do 3 months work for which I get £152,100

If you could do a years work it would be worth more that £608,000

Now remember he was only a back bencher, not a minister.

He might only "Work" for 4 years and then he gets a pension for life, not when he stops working or becomes elderly.

But that was in the dim distant past, or perhaps it was all in a dream. I mean it couldn't’t be true, or could it ?
nd that is why our taxes go up and hospitals close, the elderly are asked to survive on less, just so they live like the fat cats.

Friday, December 02, 2011

Better cars and better drvers

I found the full clip of the Roma taxi drivers perfect day.

Boys and girls have a great weekend